Sixty-first session

2-24 July 2015

Item 4 of the provisional agenda*

Consideration of reports submitted by States parties under article 18 of the Convention on the Elimination of All Forms of Discrimination against Women

List of issues and questions in relation to the combined fourth and fifth periodic reports of Croatia

General context

1.The State party’s report was due in October 2009, but received only in September 2013. Please explain the reasons for the delayed submission of the report, which, according to its introduction, covers the period from 2005 to 2010 (CEDAW/C/HRV/4-5, para. 2). Please provide updated information and data on the implementation of the Convention. Please also indicate the involvement of non‑governmental organizations, in particular women’s organizations, in the process of preparation of the report and the nature and extent of consultations with them.

Legislative and institutional framework and access to justice

2.Please provide additional information on the procedures in place for the speedy, consistent and effective implementation, monitoring and enforcement of anti-discrimination legislation (para. 13), including the Anti-Discrimination Act, the Gender Equality Act and the Labour Act.

3.Please indicate how the State party is enhancing the awareness and knowledge of women, especially those belonging to the most disadvantaged groups, such as women in rural areas, women from national minorities and, in particular, Roma women, migrant women and older women, about their rights under the Convention, the Optional Protocol thereto and the related national legislation.

National machinery for the advancement of women

4.Given that it is indicated that, owing to the recession and the reduction of the total State budget, the financial resources of the Office for Gender Equality have been reduced (para. 15), please provide updated information on the human and financial resources of the Office, the Office of the Ombudsman for Gender Equality and county/local gender equality commissions (para. 85). Please explain the mechanisms to ensure coordination at various levels between the bodies.

5.The Gender Equality Act obliges State administration bodies and legal persons under the majority ownership of the State to adopt action plans for the promotion of gender equality. It also calls upon local and regional self-government units, legal persons vested with public authority and other legal persons to introduce anti‑discrimination provisions for the achievement of gender equality into their general acts (para. 90). Please provide additional information on the implementation of those provisions of the Act. Please also provide updated information on the progress in the implementation of the National Policy for the Promotion of Gender Equality 2011-2015 and the challenges that it is intended to tackle.

Temporary special measures

6.In addition to the information provided regarding temporary special measures to increase the employment of women by encouraging women’s entrepreneurship (paras. 96, 180 and 181), please provide specific examples of the temporary special measures in place to accelerate the achievement of substantive gender equality in other areas of the Convention where women are underrepresented or disadvantaged and their results.


7.According to the annual report for 2012 by the Ombudsman for Gender Equality, sexism and gender stereotypes continue to be present in the media and women continue to be presented as sexual objects. Please provide updated information on measures taken to eliminate stereotypical portrayals of women in the media and advertising.

8.Please provide additional information on the specific measures implemented to promote equal sharing of family responsibilities between women and men, including on measures taken to increase the number of fathers who are using parental leave and data on mothers and fathers using parental leave in the form of part-time work (para. 164).

Violence against women

9.Please provide updated information on the prevalence of all forms of gender-based violence against women. Please include data on cases of domestic violence, sexual assault and rape reported, the relationship between the victim and the perpetrator, investigations, prosecutions and convictions and sentences imposed on perpetrators.

10.Please indicate the remaining challenges to the implementation of the new Family Act (2014), the new Criminal Code (2013), the Protection against Domestic Violence Act (2009) and the Free Legal Aid Act (2008). In particular, please include information on the measures that the State party is taking to ensure that women in all counties experiencing gender-based violence have access to appropriate support and assistance, including legal assistance and shelters. Please also indicate any initiatives to train and build the capacity of law enforcement officers, including police officers and judges, doctors and officials of public institutions to implement the laws, correctly identify perpetrators and provide timely protection to women experiencing violence to ensure their security. How does the State party guarantee the timely and effective safety of victims, including after the conclusion of a criminal trial, and that offenders will be held accountable?

Women in post-conflict situations

11.Please indicate the measures put in place by the State party to ensure that women who were victims of wartime violence, in particular sexual violence, have access to justice and reparations, including psychological, medical and other support and compensation. Please also indicate the measures taken by the State party to address the consequences of war on the mental health of men, which appears to be a factor in the increasing numbers of victims of femicide.

Trafficking and exploitation of prostitution

12.Please assess the effectiveness of the national action plans for combating trafficking in human beings (para. 67) and provide updated information on measures to prevent trafficking in women and to increase the protection afforded to victims.

13.Please comment on the prevalence of prostitution in the State party and on policies and measures adopted to prevent the sexual exploitation of women and girls. In addition, please provide information on measures envisaged and/or in place to support women who wish to leave prostitution. Please also explain whether measures have been taken to prevent exploitation of prostitution and trafficking in women, including by decreasing the demand for prostitution.

Participation in political and public life

14.Please provide updated data on the representation of women in political and public life, including in relation to the most recent national, county and local elections. Please explain the measures taken to tackle the challenges in increasing the representation of women in appointed senior decision-making positions in public, political and economic life. Please clarify what measures have been taken to facilitate women’s access to higher ranks in the diplomatic service (para. 137).


15.Please provide updated information on the steps taken to address the significant gender differences in secondary school enrolment (para. 141). Please also describe the efforts made by the State party to promote the diversification of educational and vocational choices for women and men and to address the underrepresentation of women among full-time professors.


16.Please provide information on the specific steps taken to tackle the persistent occupational segregation between men and women in the labour market, the prevailing larger share of women who are unemployed and the gender wage gap (para. 155). Please include updated information on the adoption of laws envisaging the same mandatory retirement age for women and men (para. 162).


17.Please provide updated information on the measures taken to include in the school curricula age-appropriate education on sexual and reproductive health and rights, including responsible sexual behaviour, and to promote the use of contraceptives and prevent the spread of sexually transmitted diseases (para. 154). Please also provide information on the measures taken to enhance access to and the affordability of contraceptives. Furthermore, please explain how the State party is dealing with the threats to legally regulated safe medical abortion arising from the activities of neoconservative groups and the limited access to abortion owing to the increasing number of hospitals taking a decision to perform abortions only for medical reasons and the increasing number of physicians exercising conscientious objections.

Rural women

18.Please provide information on the measures taken to change the traditional and social patterns by which husbands predominate as registered owners of farms, crafts, companies and cooperatives (para. 190). Please indicate the efforts that have been made to inform rural women about their rights, such as those to property, and empower them to claim those rights.

Disadvantaged groups of women

19.Please provide further information on the implementation of the Action Plan of the Decade of Roma Inclusion (para. 35) and on specific measures taken to address the widespread discrimination against Roma girls and women, in particular in education, employment and access to the health-care system.

20.Given that elderly women are most at risk of poverty in the State party (para 178), please provide updated information on the measures to combat poverty and social exclusion among those women, in particular among those living alone (para. 72).